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Foote returns but Blue Jackets fall to Wings

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Detroit coach Mike Babcock is already
thinking about how his team needs to play in the postseason.

Tomas Holmstrom scored two power-play goals and Chris Osgood
stopped 26 shots for his 42nd career shutout as the Red Wings beat
the Blue Jackets 4-0 Wednesday night.

"All four goals, someone was right in the goalie's face,"
Babcock said. "That's what you want and that's what you have to do
at playoff time to beat good goalies."

Mark Mowers and Mathieu Schneider also scored for the Western
Conference-leading Red Wings, who won their third straight and
improved to 5-0 against Columbus this season.

"Our last four games have been our best string of games in
awhile," said Osgood, who stopped both Nikolai Zherdev and Rick
Nash from close range in a scoreless opening period. "We're
playing a lot better."

Pavel Datsyuk and Mikael Samuelsson each had two assists for
Detroit, which has outscored the Blue Jackets 25-7 -- including 6-0
and 6-2 wins at Nationwide Arena.

The Blue Jackets, winners of four of their last five games
overall, had their four-game home winning streak snapped.

"I hope tonight was an off night," Columbus coach Gerard Gallant
said. "We've been playing well and a win over Detroit would have
been huge."

Columbus played stretches of undisciplined hockey, as Detroit
had a 20-5 shooting advantage in the second period. The league's
best power-play unit went 1-for-4 with the man advantage in the
period, and 2-for-7 for the game.

"In the second they had some power plays and they took
advantage," Gallant said. "That was the difference in the game.
After the first period, they just took it to us."

With Jody Shelley in the box for roughing Chris Chelios,
defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom stole Trevor Letowski's clearing
attempt to keep the play in Columbus' zone. Moments later, Jason
Williams fired a shot from the point that was redirected by
Holmstrom at 7:06 to make it 1-0 and give the Red Wings a
power-play goal for the ninth straight game.

"We got the calls in the second," said Holmstrom, who has 16
goals. "We had the power plays and got it going with them."

Lidstrom, who entered with 22 points in his last 19 games, was
involved in Detroit's next goal, seconds after a Red Wings power
play had expired. Mowers redirected Lidstrom's point shot past
goalie Pascal Leclaire to make it 2-0 at 18:09.

"Every time I go out there I try to keep it simple," Mowers
said. "Sometimes someone upstairs is looking out for you and
knocks one off your pants and in."

Holmstrom had a power-play goal on a one-timer from close range
to make it 3-0 at 4:52 of the third period. Datsyuk, who set up
Holmstrom's second goal, has 10 points in his last five games for a
team-leading 55 points.

Holmstrom still wasn't convinced the game was out of reach.

"We knew they had been playing really good lately," he said.
"We had to show up and we did."

Schneider closed out the scoring with another shot from the
point at 18:13.

Leclaire finished with 37 saves for Columbus, which was 0-for-7
on the power play.

The Blue Jackets failed to convert four power-play chances in
the first period, including a 1:17 two-man advantage.

"It was a pretty comfortable game," Mowers said. "Even when
it was 0-0, our penalty killers came up big and Ozzie obviously
made a couple of huge saves at key points in the game."

Game notes
Columbus captain Adam Foote returned to the lineup after
missing the last nine games with a hip injury. ... Blue Jackets C
Mark Hartigan was recalled from Syracuse of the AHL to replace
third-line center Mike Rupp, who fractured his left ankle Monday
against the Rangers. ... First-year Detroit coach Mike Babcock, who
also coached Anaheim from 2002-2005, won his 100th career game. ...
Red Wings LW Henrik Zetterberg, the teams' second-leading scorer
with 49-points, was scratched with an injured hip, suffered Monday
in practice. ... LW Rick Nash, who entered with 12 goals in his
last 15 games, had his nine-game points streak, which tied a
franchise record, snapped. ... Detroit is 5-1 in its last six road
games.